Freezer Meals: Stuffed Potatoes Four Ways

Four Recipes for Stuffed Potatoes
Also known as twice baked potatoes,Making a batch to store in the freezer helps make for a quick lunch or light dinner along side a soup, salad, or as a side dish that is easy to pull together at a moments notice. I give you lots of ideas for a variety of stuffing flavors to inspire you!

I usually cook up 6 large potatoes at a time to make a dozen stuffed halves to store in my freezer most of the year.  During summer I love to wrap them in foil and put on the top rack of the grill and let them heat up while we are grilling chicken. 
This potato plan has the same base recipe and then 4 variations to make: Loaded Potatoes, Broccoli with Cheddar, Chili-Cheese, and BBQ Stuffed Potatoes.

Use the base recipe as a starting point and change up your add-ins to best suit your taste or needs.   In fact the loaded potatoes you'll be seeing the pictures for here, I actually substituted turkey bacon and used plain yogurt instead of sour cream/cream cheese to make them a bit more healthy. (Ok, really to make me feel less guilty about all the cheese!)

Here's the basic recipe with the 4 Variations:

6-7 medium baking potatoes rinsed 
1 cup sour cream, plain yogurt or cream cheese
4 Tablespoons butter/margarine
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese divided: (1/2 cup reserved for topping the potatoes off)
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. pepper

Loaded Potato add-in's:
8-10 slices bacon or turkey bacon cooked and crumbled
4 green onions chopped

Chili-Cheese potato add-in's:
15 oz. can chili (or 1 1/2 cups homemade) (I grab Hormel's turkey chili to reduce the fat)
4 green onions chopped

 Broccoli Cheddar Potato add-in's:
1 1/2 cups frozen broccoli  thawed and chopped

BBQ Potatoes:
approximately 2 cups shredded bbq pork or chicken (homemade or storebought: such as Lloyds)
4 green onions chopped

Bake potatoes in 400 degree oven for one hour until tender.  Allow to cool till you can handle them:
Jan's tip: if you're using  bacon, put your bacon on a baking sheet with sides and bake in the oven at the same time as the potatoes. Cooking time will vary so keep an eye till they are crispy.  Less mess and saves time and effort!
Cut potatoes in half length wise, and using a spoon, scoop out the insides. Be certian to leave 1/4- 1/2 inch of potato with the skin to support the skin and keep it in tact. Leave skins on a baking tray.

In large mixing bowl, mash the potato pulp and add in all base ingredients listed above.  Make sure to set aside 1/2 cup cheese to sprinkle on top later.  
For the loaded potatoes, chili-cheese potatoes, and the broccoli cheddar potatoes go ahead and mix in the additional ingredients and mix well. 
For the bbq potatoes mix in the chopped green onions only, saving the bbq for a later step.
Fill the shells with the potato filling. 
 For loaded, chili-cheese, and broccoli cheddar potatoes top the filled shells with a little of the reserved cheese.
For the bbq potatoes, after filling the shells with the potato filling, top each potato with the bbq, dividing equally between the shells. Then top each potato with shredded cheese last.

Storage options:

For storing all the potatoes together in a gallon sized freezer bag (perfect for baking for families) :  Flash freeze, by popping  the baking tray in the freezer for approximately one hour till each potato is individually frozen. Then remove and store in the freezer bag.
For storing individual potatoes (perfect for grabbing for lunch on the go, or to take to a sick friend/neighbor) before freezing, individually wrap each potato in plastic wrap. Store in a zip lock bag in freezer. 
To Bake from frozen:
bake in oven 350 degree's for 30 min.
To bake from room temperature: (pull out potatoes morning you need them)
bake in 350 degree oven till heated through (15 min. approximately)
To microwave :
These potatoes. I microwave mine for about 2 minutes, but times will vary by oven. 

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